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Home   Communities   Publications   Education   Issues   Convention   Join TESOL   Sept. 21, 2011

TESOL has a new name: TESOL International Association
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Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages is now TESOL International Association. The TESOL Board of Directors approved the name change after many months of discussion and deliberation. The TESOL Board also recently approved a new three-year strategic plan as well as a new credo and updated core values. In addition to the new name, TESOL has also a launched a new logo, which you can see in this newsletter, and later this fall, the association will launch a brand new website. The full press release is available on the TESOL website. To comment on these changes, please visit TESOL President Christine Coombe's blog.

Call for contributions: New Ways in Teaching Reading
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One of TESOL's bestselling books, "New Ways in Teaching Reading" is undergoing revision for a second edition under the direction of Richard R. Day, editor. The volume is a collection of activities and exercises contributed by teachers who have used them in their teaching of reading in ESL and EFL classrooms around the world. Two areas have been identified for new contributions: teaching reading to young learners and teaching reading using the Internet. If you would like to contribute, please contact the editor, Richard R. Day. The full call for contributions is available on the TESOL website.

Call for book proposals: Differentiated Instruction and Implications for Teaching
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The goal of this volume is to provide a resource for classroom teachers and teacher educators in the area of differentiated instruction practices and processes. The volume seeks to explore possible approaches, models, principles and techniques related to effective differentiated instruction at the classroom and program levels. It will reflect current theory, address the topic of differentiated instruction within the context of English language learning, and be of practical value to classroom teachers and teacher educators. Information and proposal guidelines are available on TESOL's website.

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Call for book proposals: Assessment in English Language Programs
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TESOL is accepting proposals for a new book, "Assessment in English Language Programs." The volume will have a single author or a lead author who organizes and manages a team of authors to ensure consistency in coverage and style. The authors will explore possible approaches, models, principles and techniques related to effective assessment at the classroom and program levels. It will reflect current theory, address the topic of assessment and accountability movements within the context of English language learning and be of practical value to classroom teachers, administrators and teacher educators. Deadline for proposals is Dec. 1. Information and proposal guidelines are available on TESOL's website.

Apply for TESOL Awards and Grants
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TESOL-sponsored awards and grants recognize exceptional TESOL members. The association offers awards for professional development, service, research, materials and travel grants. You may nominate someone for a TESOL award or apply yourself. Read the award descriptions and apply by Nov. 1. If you have any questions, please contact

The art of acquiring English language skills
The Hindu    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
India: College students who can reproduce excerpts from Shakespeare but cringe at the idea of carrying a simple conversation in English? Graduates from various disciplines sporting 70-plus scores in English but struggling to frame simple questions? All is not what it seems when it comes to language, as marks are poor indicators of competency in language. We may have moved from mere textbook reading to assignments, seminars and viva-voce in teaching the English language in our colleges and universities but how many students can use the language in real-life situations? More

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Putting our minds to helping immigrants learn English
Los Angeles Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A column that questioned school meetings held in Spanish split readers. The fact remains that education officials and community leaders need to show more imagination in meeting the challenges. More

Education impact of jobs bill under debate
Education Week    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Educators and analysts are taking a hard look at whether the $55 billion K-12 portion of President Barack Obama's nearly $450 billion jobs plan will provide the jolt to schools still feeling the pinch of a sputtering economy that the administration hopes. The plan faces long odds on Capitol Hill, where lawmakers are struggling to trim at least $1.2 trillion from the deficit over the next 10 years in a climate hostile to tax increases. But, if the plan does pass, some sympathetic analysts argue it would help school districts cover the cost of long-delayed school repairs and avert big layoffs and program cuts. More

Push is on to make English the official Pennsylvania language
The Inquirer    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
What is the official language of the United States? It's not English or any other tongue. The United States does not have an official language, despite the universality of English and the frequent attempts by congressional conservatives to enthrone it as the sovereign tongue. More

Slow down — Why some languages sound so fast
Time    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Here's one of the least interesting paragraphs you've ever read: "Last night I opened the front door to let the cat out. It was such a beautiful night that I wandered down to the garden to get a breath of fresh air. Then I heard a click as the door closed behind me." Okay, it becomes a little less eye-glazing after that, with the speaker getting arrested while trying to force the door back open. This perfectly ordinary passage and a few others like it are part of an intriguing study just published in the journal Language — a study that answers one of the longest-standing questions about human speech. More

Watching the world in motion, babies take a first step toward language
ScienceDaily    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Watching children on the playground, we see them run, climb, slide, get up and do it all again. While their movements are continuous, language-users can easily divide them up and name each one. But what about people — babies — who don't yet have words? How do they make sense of a world in motion? An upcoming study in Psychological Science, a journal published by the Association for Psychological Science, finds that infants at 7 to 9 months are able to slice up the flow of events, even before they start to speak. More

School district considers K-12 language program
The Tennessean    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Kindergartners in Williamson County, Tenn., could soon be on their way to becoming fluent in a second language. It's only a goal for now, but school officials in the district are working toward the idea and have narrowed down the language choice to Mandarin Chinese, German, Spanish or French. Ultimately, whatever is selected would be taught to students from kindergarten through 12th grade, much like students around the world are taught English as a second language. "We're one of the only countries in the world where students don't walk away from their school experience knowing a second language," said Director of Schools Mike Looney. "We want to make sure our graduates are globally competitive." More

Rural school adapts to population with little English
CNN    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
This rural community in the southeast corner of Iowa is one of the last places you would expect to find a large number of students who don't speak English, yet English language learners have had a huge effect on the schools there, according to Columbus Community Schools Superintendent Rich Bridenstine. Nationally, 9 percent of students in the U.S. are considered to have limited proficiency in English, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. More

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US finds statewide problems in schools
The Boston Globe    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
At least 45,000 teachers in 275 school districts across Massachusetts lack adequate training to instruct students who speak limited English, potentially impeding thousands of the students from advancing academically, according to a U.S. Justice Department investigation. Detailing the problems in about 70 percent of the state's school districts, including Boston, Worcester and Holyoke, federal investigators leveled much of the blame on the State Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. More

A Family's Experiment in Extreme Schooling
The New York Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Clifford J. Levy: The phone rang, and my stomach clenched when I heard her voice. "Daddy? I want to go home," said my 8-year-old daughter, Arden. Two hours earlier, I dropped Arden and her two siblings off at their new school in a squat building in a forest of Soviet-era apartment blocks on Krasnoarmeyskaya Street in Moscow. They hugged me goodbye, clinging a little too long, and as I rode the metro to my office, I said a kind of silent prayer to myself that they would get through the day without falling apart. More

California English proficiency test 'almost guarantees' English learner classification
The Huffington Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Most 4- and 5-year-olds who take an English proficiency exam before kindergarten are bound to fail the test, according to a new study. Taking the California English Language Development Test "almost guarantees" a student will be classified as an English learner, the University of California, Berekely's Center for Latino Policy Research, study reports. More

US falls further behind rest of world in higher education
Deseret News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Two years ago, President Barack Obama set a goal for the U.S. to have the highest proportion of college graduates in the world by 2020. Yet, according to a study released, this goal may be further away than it was then. A report released shows the U.S. has dropped from 12th to 16th place in the proportion of young adults ages 25-34 that hold a certificate degree or higher. Korea is leading the world in the proportion of students with some sort of higher degree at more than 60 percent, followed by Canada, Japan and the Russian Federation at just around 55 percent. More

Vote4 Academic Word of 2011

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What makes teachers productive?
The New York Times (commentary)    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
If you watch the documentary "Waiting for Superman" or read Steven Brill's "Class Warfare: Inside the Fight to Fix America's Schools," you will learn that many advocates of school reform think they know how to increase teacher productivity: Rate teachers according to their students' performance on standardized tests and fire those who don't make the grade. But economic theory suggests several reasons why this approach will probably backfire. Scores on standardized tests are not an accurate measure of success in later life, because they don't capture important aspects of emotional intelligence, such as self-control and ability to collaborate with others. More

Fulbright Scholar Program Deadline Approaching

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English teaching program may fail 'cause of the lack of teachers'
VietNamNet Bridge    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Vietnam: A lot of primary schools in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, still dare not approach the pilot program on teaching English to primary school students because they do not have English teachers. Primary schools in HCM City are following different English teaching curricula — optional English, intensive English, Cambridge's English teaching program and extracurricular programs such as DynEd and Phonics. More

The case for teaching texting
The Guardian    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
United Kingdom: Is it time we made use of the enormous potential of mobile phones in our classrooms? A lot of folks are very worried about the impact of teenagers and texting. In a Daily Mail article, John Humphrys expressed the view that, "SMS vandals ... are doing to our language what Genghis Khan did to his neighbors," and goes on to warn of the danger of "our written language ending up as a series of ridiculous emoticons and ever-changing abbreviations." More

Engaging students with Twitter
THE Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
On any given school day you can find Enrique Legaspi's eighth-grade history and leadership class at Hollenbeck Middle School in Los Angeles using Twitter to learn more about the events of World War I, collect and share information about the women's suffrage movement and round up information about university-level programs. It's all in a day's teaching for Legaspi, who has been using Twitter actively in his classroom since learning of the micro-blogging platform's educational applicability from other educators. More

Spanish-language Reading Assessment (K-2)

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New film fights negative perception of teachers
eSchool News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Think of it as kryptonite for "Superman": As lawmakers work to strip teachers of their collective bargaining rights and school reformers place much of the blame for the problems plaguing public education at their feet, a new film from former teacher Ninive Calegari strives to tell the story of what it's really like for American school teachers from their own perspective. More

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The TESOL English Language Bulletin is presented as a service to members of Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) and other English language teaching professionals. For information about TESOL member benefits, visit or contact us at

TESOL English Language Bulletin is a digest of the most important news selected for TESOL from thousands of sources by the editors of MultiBriefs, an independent organization that also manages and sells advertising. TESOL does not endorse any of the advertised products and services. Opinions expressed in the articles are those of the author and not of TESOL.

Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601   Download media kit
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